Wednesday, December 30, 2009
1 lb. peppered bacon
5 lb. bag Yukon Gold potatoes
1/2 gallon of milk
2 sticks of butter (or a small tub)
cheese (to garnish)
extra bacon (to garnish)
sour cream (to garnish)
Fry bacon until crisp and drain. (Not sure why you have to drain it because you will need to save that grease to put into your soup!)
Peel potatoes and boil until soft (approx. 40 minutes); drain. Return to stockpot, add butter and stir. With hand mixer (OR the imersion blender you got for Christmas) blend well, like mashed potatoes. Slowly add milk to desired consistency and mix until smooth. Chop bacon until fine and add to soup.
Add a little bacon grease too. The more you can stand to use, the better your soup will be, I promise. The crumbles are the best part, so make sure you at least use those.
Simmer on low; salt and pepper to taste. Put a few shots of Tobasco in there too.
Garnish with cheese, sour cream, and NO chives!
(Makes a lot, invite your neighbors over!)
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
This recipe makes me warm and cozy. I grew up spending so much time with my grandparents and my grandmother made batches of Spiced Tea for friends to share during the holidays. When I went to college, she had to make a batch for me, it was a special treat as a little girl that made me feel grown up, like their coffee. As I got older, it was something that warmed me up from the inside out and reminded me of my Nana with every sip.
I wish I could share a cup with her right now. It's a windy, cold day and who couldn't use a little warm and cozy?
18 oz Tang
1 cup instant tea
2 1/2 cups sugar
20 oz. instant lemonade
2 tsp. powdered cloves
2 tsp cinnamon
Blend all ingredients carefully and store in airtight container.
Add 2-3 T to a mug of hot water.
There you have it, warm and cozy. Enjoy!
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
2. Meat, with bone in it
3. Anything my family does well--Nana's Chicken and Dumplin's and Mom's Choclate Meringue Pie, for example. I have worked through my nerve and made a fabulous pot of our family spaghetti recipe (Uncle Roy, Nana, Papa, and Mom have added to it and each do it their own way basically following a recipe) once. And I've made a pot of Dad's famous pinto beans too, which always intimidated me. He walked me through and they were fantastic!
4. Pie crust (Pillsbury works for me)
I'm sure there are more, but Greta and I briefly had a conversation about this today and I've actually thought about it before. Now it's official, I posted it.
Monday, December 14, 2009
1 box Crispix cereal
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup peans (I substitute pretzels)
1 bag popped microwave popcorn
1 lb. butter (I use 3 sticks instead of 4)
2 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup corn syrup
1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 cups brown sugar
*optional: red and green M&M's
*another option: pistachios and dried cranberries
Mix Crispix, almonds, pecans, and popcorn together in large foil roasting pan. Set aside.
In sauce pan, heat sugar, butter, vanilla, syrup, and baking powder. Cook until boiling. Boil 5 minutes (or until glossy). Pour over cereal; mix. Bake at 225 degrees for an hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
Wish I had some so I could post a photo for you. And eat, of course.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Mother Load Pretzels
1 package (10 ounces) pretzel rods
1 package (14 ounces) caramels
1 tablespoon evaporated milk
1-1/4 cups miniature semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons butterscotch chips (I substituted peanut butter chips)
2/3 cup milk chocolate toffee bits
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
With a sharp knife, cut pretzel rods in half; set aside. In a large saucepan over low heat, melt caramels with milk. In a large shallow bowl, combine the chips, toffee bits and walnuts.
Pour caramel mixture into a 2-cup glass measuring cup. Dip the cut end of each pretzel piece two-thirds of the way into caramel mixture (reheat in microwave if mixture becomes too thick for dipping). Allow excess caramel to drip off, then roll pretzels in the chip mixture. Place on waxed paper until set. Store in an airtight container.
(Makes 4 1/2 dozen)
(From Taste of Home magazine)
Monday, November 30, 2009
A couple of weeks ago, my mother decided to make some without things I don't like and brought me a bowl. I ate every bite. A couple of days later she brought me another bowl. Ate that one too! It was great...and I even ate a few of the diced tomatoes when nobody was looking.
She didn't follow a recipe, she just kind of made it up and dumped in the ingredients. I interviewed her for the recipe the day she made it and this is what I got:
Mom's Veggie Soup
4 lbs. good quality meat, cut into bite sized pieces (Mom used filet mignon, I'd probably use sirloin)
Onion (I would substitute garlic)
Add beef and chicken broth (one of each, quart sized)
Chopped celery (6-7 ribs)
Baby carrots cut into 1/3s, half pkg.
Large can whole new potatoes, cut into chunks, with juice
Regular sized can new potatoes, sliced, with juice
Can Ranch style beans, with juice
Can hominy with juice
Can corn, drained
Can LeSeur peas, drained
Cabbage (chop and add last)
Can chopped tomatoes
Lima beans if desired (I would desire...)
*Mom didn't, but I would probably add zucchini
Cube meat and brown in onion (garlic for me). Simmer in broth until tender (sirloin would need to cook longer to become tender). Halfway through meat simmering, add fresh vegetables (but not cabbage). Cook celery and carrots 20 minutes until tender. Add remaining ingredients (canned ingredients and cabbage).
Friday, November 27, 2009
2 Double Stuf Oreo cookies
Small tube or can of icing (if using can, put some into baggie, cut tip and squeeze out)
Take apart one Oreo cookie, and lay one half down with icing facing up Then press a whole cookie into the icing of the cookie half (will probably need to use more icing to keep attached).
Place 3-4 cand corn into the icing of the whole cookie, sticking straight up like a turkey tail.
For head, place one Whopper in front of the whole cookie (will probably need icing to stick) and squeeze icing on to Whopper to create eyes.
Lay one candy corn in front of the Whopper to create the turkey's beak.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Sunday, November 22, 2009
This may be the soup that made me a soup lover. I have to share!
Creamy Broccoli Soup
4 medium carrots, cut in narrow, 1 inch strips
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups broccoli, finely chopped
1 cup cauliflower, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups water, salted
1 10 3/4 ounce can chicken broth
2 1/4 cups milk
3 T flour
1 1/2 cup ham, diced
1 1/4 cups Velveeta, diced
1 T butter
Cook vegetables in water until crisp (start with carrots and celery, then broccoli and cauliflower). Heat broth and 1 1/2 cups milk in large saucepan. Blend flour and remainder of milk until smooth. Add ham and cheese. When cheese has melted, add cooked, undrained vegetables. Add butter and parsley.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Tonight though, my sweet mother brought me a bowl of homemade Chicken Noodle Soup. It was delicious. I think Mom spent the entire day making it, starting with a trip to the grocery store and cooking a whole chicken (something I don't think I'll ever do).
I'm a pretty picky soup eater too--it has to be cool out, but I made an exception for Mom today and I'm so glad I did. Her soup was fantastic! I could taste the rosemary and Italian seasoning and the soup was filled with tender bits of celery and carrots.
She said the recipe was Paula Deen's and I wanted to share, it's a keeper!
Thanks for taking care of me Mom, I love you!
Thursday, November 5, 2009
We love this stuff at our house. I'm craving it, it's comforting oatmeal with a great "pop" in it's texture. Riley loves his with honey, milk, and blueberries.
Lunch: Steamy Kitchen's Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Ka Gai)
I actually ate this yesterday from Thai Cuisine and it was divine (Thanks, Babe (for picking it up) and Shayne (for recommending it), with a little Pad Thai, of course!
I had to find a recipe and whaddaya know I find one--by a friend of Pioneer Woman's! Well, of course it's got to be the best one out there, so I'm sharing!!
Dinner: Macaroni and Cheese
and a collection of macaroni and cheese recipes from Food Network (um, the Lobster Mac and Cheese sounds pretty delightful).
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Some pumpkin recipes I routinely make: Dinner in a Pumpkin, Melissa's Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins, Pumpkin Dip, and Pumpkin Crunch (like Dump Cake, but with pumkin).
I'm going to post some pumpkin/Halloween recipes I wish I could try. Will the hospital let me have an Easy Bake Oven in my room? :-) What a fun blog that would be!! I may be on to something...
Confession #2--You know, I've never liked candy corn either. It sure does fascinate me though, it's pretty, fun, cheap, and yet another fabulous fall treat. Here are some candy corn goodies I found:
Candy Corn Bark
(I'm all about my sweet tooth, but this may be TOO sweet! Maybe a little more pretzel and a little less sweet treats?)
Candy Corn Cordial
Lick the Bowl Good's Candy Corn Rice Krispie Treats
Smitten Kitchen's Pumpkin Waffles
Real Simple's Pumpkin Cornmeal Muffins
101 Cookbook's Thai Spiced Pumpkin Soup
The Mother Load's Creamy Pumpkin Pasta
(This looks great, but I don't love Italian Sausage--would probably substitute with ground turkey sausage, even sausage links or good ol' Jimmy Dean in this one!)
Sunset's Spicy Avocado Poblano Salad
I should stop, but I can't....
Cooking Light's Pumpkin Ravioli with Gorgonzola Sauce
On to some sweet treats...
Libby's Pumpkin Roll
Picky Palate's Pumpkin Spice and Chocolate Caramel Corn
Picky Palate's Black Bottomed Mini Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites
Lick the Bowl Good's Pumpkin Spice Latte:
This one is by far prettier than Starbuck's version!
Sunday, October 25, 2009
(Photos from hgtv.com)
Pioneer Woman's Migas
No Onions or bell pepper for me, so these are definitely prettier!
Rachael Ray's Chipotle-Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
With a few Julio's Corn Tortilla Chips or some French Bread...yummy!
Paula Deen and Bobby's Baked Tilapia
Ina Garten's Parmesan Roasted Asparagus
This is very interesting, not my usual fare, but it's peaked my curiosity and I can't stop thinking or talking about it, so had to post it here. Lots of flavors, textures, and ingredients that don't usually all end up at the same pan, but I have to try it!
Sunny Anderson's Strawberry Chocolate Jiggle Fluff Pie
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Oh, I'm so excited!!!
And while cooking and baking fictional food, let's just imagine me in this fictional kitchen, k?
I'm hungry, it's time for breakfast, so how about my fictional breakfast meal? Here it is:
Picky Palate's Pumpkin Spiced Cream Cheese Breakfast Rolls
And my cup of Starbucks would normally be a spiced pumpkin latte at this point in the year, but since I've had my pumpkin fix with the breakfast rolls, we'll go with something a little less foofy this morning, not as sweet as I usually go.
(this, of course is a fictional Starbucks location I'm having my coffee...hmmmmm, where shall I be?)
Oh this is more fun than I thought--I can't wait for lunch!!
Fictional Lunch: (No Onions, of course...)
Ezra Pound Cake's Grilled Vegetable and Goat Cheese Sandwich
Link won't work, so copy and paste to see original blog:
with a side of these, please!
Copy and paste link:
(I have made fried pickles and loved the recipe I have. Robbye and I made them one weekend because she has a deep fryer and I don't--thank goodness. My preference is pickle slices, NOT spears, and the panko gave it a very good texture--I did find lots of recipes that used a cornmeal breading, but to me the panko packs a good crunch!)
Greta made this and told me it was great--not surprised since it's from Pioneer Woman--she's my hero! I've been craving Asian this pregnancy and have wanted to make these but haven't gotten around to it yet.
Pioneer Woman's Simple Sesame Noodles
Copy and paste (WHY can't I post a link today?)
Pioneer Woman says simple is best on this one, but I might add some shredded carrots or matchstick cucumbers...and No Onions, of course!
Monday, September 28, 2009
2 lb. yellow squash
1 cup grated carrot
NOT 1/2 cup diced onion
1 14.5 oz can chicken broth
1 can cream of mushroom soupo
2 T mayonnaise
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 cup crushed cornflakes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut squash into 1/2 inch rounds. Cook squash and next 3 ingredients in large skillet over medium heat, stirring often, 25 minutes, or until tender. Drain well, reserving broth for another use; pat squash mixture dry with paper towels.
Stir together mushroom soup and next 3 ingredients in a large bowl; stir in squash mixture until blended. Spoon mixture into a lightly greased 11x17 inch baking dish; sprinkle with crushed cornflakes.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until golden and bubbly.
(Southern Living August 2008)
Sunday, September 27, 2009
1/2 cup ground dark roast coffee
1 T ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
5 cups water
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup chocolate syrup
1 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
sweetened whipped cream
ground cinnamon to garnish
Place coffee in coffee filter or filter basket; add cinnamon and nutmeg. Add water to coffeemaker; brew according to manufacturer's directions.
Combine brown sugar, chocolate syrup, and milk in large heavy saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves. Stir in coffee and vanilla. Serve immediately with a dollop of wh ipped cream; garnish, if desired.
(Makes 6 1/2 cups)
(Southern Living, January 1998)
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Chicken Pot Pie Soup
4 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 quarts water
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, split
1 T bullion flavoring (I used 2 large cubes)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
NOT 1/2 small white onion, diced (1/4 cup)
2 stalks celery (1/2 cup), diced
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 pounds frozen mixed vegetables (I just used both bags)
1 cup heavy cream
pinch sea salt
1 store-bought pie crust (I used 2 Pillsbury ones for 4 adults and 2 children)
Add diced potatoes to a large bowl filled with cold water. Set aside.
(Now might be a good time to start your pie crusts. Preheat oven as directed on package. Lay pie crust on a baking sheet and place into the oven. Cook according to package instructions, or until pie crust is golden brown. When crust has cooled break into pieces. With Pillsbury ones, I cut them into squares using a pizza cutter.)
Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil. Add chicken, reduce heat to a simmer and allow to poach; about 8-10 minutes. Remove the chicken to a plate to cool. Continue to simmer the broth, adding the bullion until reduced by half, about 10 more minutes. Dice the chicken when cooled.
In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. DO NOT add the onion (though I did use minced garlic) and celery, cooking u ntil translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the flour and whisk until it forms a roux. Add the Italian seasoning and pepper, cook for 3 more minutes.
Whisk the roux into the broth and bring back up to a boil. Drain the potatoes. Add the potatoes and the chicken to the broth over low heat. Stir in the frozen vegetables. Place a lid on top and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes (probably more like 25 for me). Stir in cream and a pinch of sea salt and cook for 5 more minutes.
Ladle soup into bowls
and garnish with pie crust.
YUMOLA!! A huge hit with all--and Lexi ate more than I dreamed she would...especially after she wanted Mommy to pick out the green ones, the orange ones, etc.!!
(foodnetwork.com--Aaron McCargo Jr.)
And for dessert...
Stephanie made these delicious treats for dessert when we had Bunco at her house. They are from Pioneer Woman's website and they're fun. I was so curious about the secret ingredient--Mountain Dew!!
2 (large) Granny Smith apples
2 cans crescent rolls
2 sticks butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 small can Mountain Dew
Peel and core apples, cut into 8 slices each. Roll each apple slice in a crescent roll. Place in a 9x13 buttered pan. Melt butter (I used Pyrex measuring cup) and add sugar; barely stir. Add vanilla, stir, and pour over apples. Pour Mountain Dew around the edges of the pan. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
Serve with ice cream and spoon some of the sweet sauce from the pan over the top.
Thanks Pioneer Woman (and Stephanie) for another fantastic recipe!!
Monday, September 21, 2009
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup honey
3 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup ground flaxseed
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup nuts and soft dried fruit (I used walnuts and dried cherries)
Mix together peanut butter and honey until smooth. Gradually add in oats and flaxseed. Add chocolate chips, nuts, and fruit. Mix gently in stand mixer or smush together by hand.
Roll into ping-pong-sized balls and, for maximum presentation value, put in paper mini muffin cups.
You can eat then right away (or with a spoon out of the bowl like Riley and I did!) but they'll be less sticky after a night in the refrigerator. They freeze well too, layered on wax paper in an airtight container.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Dad's Pinto Beans
1 lb. pinto beans
5-6 slices chopped salt pork (I'm a city girl and I used bacon!)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup picante sauce (optional)
Wash and pick through beans. Put into 1/2 gallon pot, add pork. Cover beans with 3-4 inches of water--cook on high heat until boiling. Turn down heat until a low boil and cover. Check often to keep plenty of water over beans--add only HOT water if needed. Cook about 2 hours (approximately, of course). Quit adding water, take off lid and simmer to boil of excess water. Salt and pepper to taste, add picante sauce if desired.
Another one of Dad's secrets:
Get a package of Jiffy yellow cornbread mix, follow mixing directions, but fry in skillet like pancakes. Dad calls them "Charlie Cakes!"
I'm making these for our tailgate tomorrow, to go with Chris and Shauna's brisket. Hook 'em Horns!
Thursday, September 17, 2009
This was way easier than it sounded...great for a weeknight meal!
Tuscan Pasta with Tomato-Basil Cream
1 (20-oz) pkg refrigerated four-cheese ravioli
1 (16-oz) jar sun-dried tomato Alfredo sauce
2 T white wine
2 medium-size fresh tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil (from my windowsil herb garden!)
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Prepare pasta according to package directions.
Meanwhile, pour Alfredo sauce into a medium saucepan. Pour wine into sauce jar; cover tightlyl and shake well. Stir wine mixture into saucepan. Stir in chopped tomatoes and 1/2 cup chopped basil, and cook over medium-low heat 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Toss with pasta, and top evenly with 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese. Garnish with basil strips if desired.
Yummy! For my friends who know me well...I even ate the chopped tomatoes--I didn't even pick them out. Can you believe it? :-)
Russ and Riley really enjoyed this one too.
(Southern Living, July 2007)
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Szechuan Beef and Broccoli
1 pound top round steak, sliced against the grain into scant 1/4" thick strips (I bought HEB's "Great for Stir Fry" package)
1 tsp. garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil spray
1 (14-oz) bag frozen broccoli (about 5 cups)
1 T freshly minced garlic
2 t toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup bottled Szechuan stir-fry sauce (I took a chance and bought a regular stir-fry sauce, there was no Szechuan sauce)
In a large bowl, combine the steak, garlic powder, salt, and pepper and toss until well combined.
Place a large nonstick wok over high heat. When hot, mist with the olive oil spray. Add the broccoli and garlic and cook, stirring, for 4-6 minutes, or until the garlic softens and the broccoli is heated through and crisp-tender, being careful not to burn the garlic. Transfer to a large bowl and cover to keep warm.
Return the pan to high heat and add 1 tsp of the sesame oil. When hot, add half of the steak in a single layer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned on both sides, 1-2 minutes. Transfer the steak to the bowl with the vegetables and re-cover. Repeat with the remaining 1 tsp. sesame oil and steak. Return all the steak and vegetables to the pan and remove from the heat.
Add the sauce and mix well to coat. Divide among 4 bowls and serve.
I served with brown rice.
Loved it and so did the family! Russ even put more of the sauce in his bowl!
(Biggest Loser Cookbook)
Monday, September 14, 2009
4 boneless chicken breasts (7 oz. each)
salt and pepper
12 oz. spinach, sauteed
1 red pepper, roasted, peeled, seeded, and quartered (I bought a jar of roasted red bell peppers and sliced them lengthwise)
12 oz. goat cheese
8 oz. Parmesan cheese
flour for dredging
1/2 cup milk
1/2 lb. bread crumbs (had no idea what this conversion was, so I just poured some in)
2 oz. Romano cheese
4 tsp. chopped Italian parsley (fresh from my kitchen window herb garden!!)
2 tsp. granulated garlic
3/4 cup olive oil (I used less)
Between 2 pieces of plastic wrap, pound each chicken breast until thin. Season each breast with salt and pepper, then top with equal amounts of spinach, red bell pepper, goat cheese, and Parmesan cheese.
Roll breasts with ingredients inside. (Use a toothpick if needed.)
Refrigerate, covered, for at least 1 hour, and up to overnight.
Lightly dust each roll with flour. Whisk eggs and milk in bowl. Dip rolls in milk/egg mixture. Combine bread crumbs, Romano cheese, parsley, garlic, salt, and pepper in a separate bowl and dredge in bread crumb mixture.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat a large skillet to medium and add olive oil. Lightly saute the chicken until golden brown on all sides. Transfer to a baking dish and bake for 12-15 minutes or until cooked through.
I served with some edamame and one of Lipton's pasta sides. I thought it was delicious and Riley ate every bite on his plate without a battle or a bribe!
(Recipe courtesy of Chef Abraham, Harry Caray's, Chicago)